Eskom, which supplies almost all the country’s electricity, says it will have a funding shortfall of R225 billion over the next four years.
The government said in October it would inject R20 billion into Eskom and it could also convert its existing R60 billion subordinated loan to state-owned equity.
But the sum is due to come from the sale of “non-strategic assets”, privatisation that is sure to come under attack from President Jacob Zuma’s far-left opponents and powerful trade unions.
South Africa this month has suffered its worst power shortages since 2008 due to creaking infrastructure, power plant failures and emergency maintenance.
State utility Eskom warned that if it did not continue to implement rolling blackouts, the entire grid could collapse as it lost up to a third of its 42 000 MW capacity.
Meanwhile, the continuation of black-outs are likely to cost the hospitality sector millions of rands.
This was confirmed by the spokesperson for Emerald Casino and Resorts Marli Wolmarans.
“People will stop visiting resorts, casinos and hotels which would result in millions lost due to this inefficiency. It’s unfortunate that everyone will be affected by the continuation of blackouts, particularly during this festive season. This is our peak season.
It will hit us hard in the pocket and imagine the kind of impact it will have on the economy?” she asked.